Stark State College is known for “offering quality, affordable education that leads to an in-demand career,” said Marisa Rohn, executive director of advancement, marketing and Stark State College Foundation.
“We make sure our degrees conform with the needs of the work force in the region,” said Rohn. “We have advisory committees for each of our academic program areas—people in the industry who make sure our curriculum aligns with their employment needs.”
Rohn said that students at Stark State are focused on their education—more than 80 percent are working while attending school to pay for it—and she noted that many students who come to Stark State transfer to curriculum earning a four-year degree.
Stark State was founded in 1960 on a foundation of engineering technologies. Manufacturing and, in recent years, information technology, have been popular career choices through the years. Rohn said that Stark State has more than 230 different opportunities for academic study, including associate degrees and career enhancement certificates.
“Health is always a big major for us,” she said, noting popularity of such fields as nursing, dental assistance and physical therapy.
Stark State, whose main campus is at 6200 Frank Avenue NW, North Canton, now has two satellite locations in the area of Akron, one at 755 White Pond Drive and the other at 360 Perkins Street. In addition, the school has off-campus sites in Barberton, Alliance and downtown Canton. And, Stark State also offers 16 degrees for students that can be completed online.
Total enrollment at Stark State is more than 15,000, according to statistics provided by the school.
“I think what our students like is that we’re a big school when you look at our enrollment, but our class size is small and our professors have real world experience,” said Rohn. “Our students say they don’t feel like just a number here.”
Attempts are made to keep tuition costs down, Rohn said. Scholarships are available, as well.
“Last year, more than 540 students received scholarships,” Rohn said. “The average amount per student was $1,000. We have more than a half million dollars (in scholarship funds) available annually.”
A unique educational opportunity now being offered at Stark State is College Credit Plus, a program in which students can graduate from Stark State earlier by earning college credits at the same time as they are completing high school work.
“The college credits you earn can be used to complete an associate of arts or associate of science degree at Stark State,” says the school’s website, “which can then transfer to any Ohio public university towards a bachelor’s degree.”
Many of Stark State’s students graduate with multiple degrees, said Rohn.
“Our students are dedicated. They know what they want to do, and they come here to get the education for it,” Rohn said. “In many cases, they’re balancing work, family and school to better themselves for the sake of their careers and their families.”
STARK STATE COLLEGE BY THE NUMBERS:
• 15,000 Enrollment
• 27 Average age of Stark State students
• 80 Percentage of students who work while attending Stark State
• 90 Percentage of Stark State graduates who live or work in Stark County
• $170 Approximate tuition cost per credit hour
• 95 Percentage of Stark State graduates who are either working in or furthering their education in their chosen field